Writing your UCAS personal statement might seem like not to challenging a task, after all, there’s lot’s of advice out there on what to include, how long, yada, yada -but everyone else is following the same advice, right?

So how do you get the attention of the admissions tutor above the noise of all those other applicants, especially when you’re applying for a highly competitive course?

There’s some key things you need to include but here’s out top 6 tips for making your statement shine!

1. Show your interest

Now’s not the time for wishy-washy, wordy, drawn out paragraphs – make the most of the space you have!

Make sure you detail any wider reading, or any additional talks or lectures you might have attended around your intended subject of study. It’s also great to include details of any relevant societies or organisations you are part of that support your enthusiasm for the subject.

Work experience or volunteering in the relevant industry is also a good way to get the admissions tutors’ attention as it shows that not only do you have a love of the subject, but you have enough life (and people) skills to make good progress with the study programme. 

Evidence is key here, so use examples to back up what you are writing!

2. Use engaging language

The admissions tutor reading your statement will probably have a huge pile of applications to read through, so make your statement interesting to read!

They will have seen so many that state the student is “passionate” about the subject or have loved it “from an early age”, so bland, boring, frequently used words and phrases are not going to make you stand out.

Think creatively about what you wish to say, and very often less is more! Concise, precise and succinct is the way to go! And gimmicks should definitely be out!

3. Make your opening sentence count

This is going to make or break your application, so make it a strong one by clearly stating why you have applied for the course.

Don't use cliches or any other over-used phrases or sentences - your application needs to stand out!

Instead, think about what appeals to you most about the subject you are applying for, and why. Focusing on a specific aspect will help draw the reader in and make them interested in what you have to say.

For inspiration on an opening sentence, take a look at some of our top rated personal statement examples. (Please don't copy these though, or your application will be penalised for plagiarism).

4. Make it easy to read

Use an appropriate format; break your statement up into easy to read, and appropriate, paragraphs!

This is something that a lot of prospective students miss out on, and a long block of text is really off-putting and difficult to read, so it could be that your statement doesn’t get the attention it deserves if you submit it like this.

5. Include the essentials

Whilst it’s important for the admissions tutor to get a sense of who you are, through your wider interests, try to keep your statement relevant, and limit the amount of unnecessary information.

Remember, whilst there is a word count, you don’t need to max it out to produce a good statement!

Waffling on about things such as your A level grades or anything else already included in the rest of your UCAS application will only serve to make the reader lose interest.

6. Tell the truth

Your UCAS personal statement is not the place to over-exaggerate or even lie about your capabilities!

You can be sure that the admissions tutor has heard it all before, so you’ll be caught out during the interview if you choose to do this.

It’s also important to note that getting your statement written by someone else is also a big no-no, and will get your application thrown out before you’ve even started.

UCAS have plagiarism software that they run every personal statement through, so they will know if you've stolen someone else's!

Further information

For more tips and advice on writing your personal statement for university, please see: